Earlier this year, we featured a time lapse video from Derrick Lytle that captured tulips blooming in his in-home studio. Using our Blink controller and a GoPro HERO3+ camera, the tulip project was actually a test in preparation for a 3-month shoot Lytle had in mind. Now armed with a Solar Enclosure as well, he planned on capturing a 3-month time lapse of the transition between winter and spring in the Zion National Park high desert in Southern Utah. He scheduled Blink to shoot every 15 minutes between 7am-7pm.
The most challenging part of the project for Lytle was determining a good location that also had options for mounting for a good shot. Since this was going to be shot in the backcountry, he had to use what was available to him (i.e. trees). He ended up deciding to use zip ties and affixing the enclosure to a tree, but did have concerns that the harsh weather and temperature fluctuations might weaken and snap the ties (luckily this didn’t happen). A lot of planning went into mounting due to the length of time that the setup would be deployed.
Lytle has some advice for others getting into time lapse photography:
"Plan, plan, plan. Losing a time lapse shoot that is just a few hours isn't fun, it's worse when you put weeks and months into it to make it work. Spend time scouting locations, squashing bugs, testing, retesting, and then testing some more. Do your research. You don't want to have a camera sitting outside for months only to come back and find out that you missed a setup step or something simple. If you're looking to do time lapse photography of any kind, get used to failing, learn from it, and then go back out again. That's the only way to get good at this medium.”
And we couldn’t agree more. We always suggest to our customers to allow ample time to test, learn and get comfortable with their time lapse equipment. Lytle is a perfect example of the right way to approach a long-term project in order to set the project up for success and eliminate unwanted surprises.
All-in-all, the project ran smoothly. Lytle even noted that he was happy to find that the internal GoPro battery and the V15 battery were both fully charged when he picked up the equipment at the end of the shoot. He said that the enclosure was pounded with weather (which is evident in the video), but held up great.
Lytle has been using time lapse photography more and more - we were curious what draws him to this medium. Here’s what he had to say:
“Being able to capture change and make it relevant to us as humans is interesting to me. Video is a powerful storytelling tool and to be able to show huge changes in weather, climate, etc. is a great teaching opportunity”